Skip to main content

Grateful Dead Live at Palais Des Sports on 1974-09-20

Audio Preview

Grateful Dead Live at Palais Des Sports on 1974-09-20

Topics Live concert

Cumberland Blues, Jack Straw, It Must Have Been The Roses, Beat It On Down The Line, Scarlet Begonias, Black Throated Wind, Friend Of The Devil, El Paso, Row Jimmy, Weather Report Suite Prelude-> Weather Report Suite Part 1-> Let It Grow-> Stella Blue, Around & Around China Cat Sunflower, I Know You Rider, Big River, Brown Eyed Women, Greatest Story Ever Told, Brokedown Palace, Truckin', Eyes Of The World, Not Fade Away, Goin' Down The Road Feelin' Bad, One More Saturday Night, E: U.S. Blues

Collection GratefulDead
Band/Artist Grateful Dead
Venue Palais Des Sports
Location Paris, France

Source Soundboard
Lineage SBD > master reel > reel to reel > DAT > CD > SoundForge > CD
Taped by
Transferred by


SBD > master reel > reel to reel > DAT > CD > SoundForge > CD; stemming from Marcello Gasperini´s and Julian's source material; see info file for various fixes and flaws; to a tree?, runs a bit slow? (see notes in info for companion 9/21/74 shns)


Reviewer: Chris U. - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 20, 2014
Subject: Once again I stand in awe
These are incredible performances ... songs played before many thousands of people at an incredible volume but here played with some very interesting nuances that will only be apparent to those ready and willing to understand.

How did they do it?

By the way, someone down below noted that they could hear Ned on the synthesizer during Scarlet Begonias (awesome version here!). I'm pretty sure that's Keith. First, you'll notice that when you hear the synth, you don't hear Keith's keys. Second, from NedBase: "09-20-74 - Ned was scheduled to play the "Ned and Phil" set but arrived at the hall too late to play." That's why there's no Seastones at this show.

Lastly, there's a Charlie Miller upgrade that's recently been uploaded which you should check out.
Reviewer: weironamissionfrombob - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - March 18, 2014
Subject: Scarlet
some entertaining moments, the next night is better & 9/18 is waayyy better....China-Rider is not great, but its not bad. Scarlet comes to life, Jerry does some nice stuff in the Truckin' Jam...Truckin' through GDRFB is worth hearing at least once.
Reviewer: Cliff Hucker - favoritefavorite - February 15, 2011
Subject: Rough sledding...
A problematic mix and some lackluster musicianship make for some rough sledding on this one. The first set is poorly played. It almost seems like the band already has their bags packed, eager to finish the tour and get home. It's a far cry from their extraordinary performances the last time they were in the city of lights, only two and a half years before this largely mailed in performance. The band again tries to rally for the second set, a choppy and uncohesive performance of Truckin' completely breaking down before preceeding into a lethargic rendition of Eyes of the World that sadly can't redeem this performance. (86 pts)
Reviewer: clementinescaboose - favoritefavoritefavorite - January 11, 2011
Subject: junk
I strongly disagree with the reviewers lauding this performance. there are a few compelling moments, but this show, and this tour, is mostly garbage.

phil is just awful.

stick with 9/18 and the summer tour, please!
Reviewer: ShowLove_ShineLight - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - August 29, 2010
Subject: Felt compelled
Just heard end of set 1 and start of set 2 on XM, felt compelled to say that the jam between China & Rider is amazing! Phil is out in front...beautiful. It is a great rendition, like no other version i've heard. Some are very similar, this one is not! Thank you boys!

ps, I heard the Truckin > Eyes was a doozie, I'll have to listen for myself.... Let it grow>Stella was very nice.
Reviewer: snoochieboochies - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 7, 2010
Subject: regarding bob
i love to bash bobby as much as anyone. why? he sure makes it easy with the... gee, where do i start? the spitting, jerky chiken-head manouevre, cowboy operas, short shorts, "HAW!!!", and on & on. "you cant hear bobby on this recording so i cant say how he was, not as if thats a bad thing." HOWEVER, i dare anyone to watch the grateful dead movie-disc 2, extra footage from the mid-october 1974 winterland shows... the sound quality, the seperation, the bonus songs(!!!), everything about this production is top-notch. listen to it carefully: it's all bobby. jerry appears blown away by weir and doesn't seem able to keep up with him. phil and billy are, of course, conspiring to unleash the forces. but it's obvious: "ladies and gentlemen, mmmmmmr. robert weir!" for this run of shows. opinions aren't facts, but imho, bob weir is a tremendously gifted rhythm guitarist and the dead movie, particularly disc 2, is a testament to the man's skills. watch and listen to him play lead rhythm guitar, if there's such a thing outside the dead cosmos. the jerry of rhythm guitar, dare i say? i love this band.
Reviewer: thewaymouth - - March 12, 2010
Subject: *Speed correction, aisle Palais!* (Mr. Charlie, we need you.)
Man, the pontificating below. The Popes are in tha house. Holier than thou's w/holes in their arguments.
1), The Dead could sing - in fact they were inspired by CS&N (Jerry worked w/C&N even), and on Workingman's & American Beauty they specifically focused on their vocal harmony. Overall that was a strength through the 70's.
2), All this junk about China White. 'Oh no, the band is just so zonked out this night etc...'
Meanwhile, the uploader wonders in his notes down below, if the tape "runs a bit slow?"
A. IMO, more than a bit. Hell yeah!
Reviewer: geraldusa - favoritefavorite - February 19, 2010
Subject: Not at Their Best
I see some 5 star ratings for this night. Frankly, I don't see it that way. The band sounds flat, tired and definitely off. I won't speculate on what was the cause....china white and so on, perhaps, or maybe not. Who knows? For those of us fortunate enough to have seen them many times in the 1970's, there were plenty of other nights when the music was influenced by one substance or another, and they sounded much better than this evening in Paris
Reviewer: Folkhippy - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - November 29, 2009
Subject: Scarlet Begonias
This show contains one of the best Scarlet's I have ever heard. The jamming is fluid and trippy, perhaps a result of the China. This whole show is a highlight of '74 with amazing versions of all the songs. If you listen closely during the long jam of Scarlet, you can hear Ned Lagin playing synthesizer briefly. I'm not sure why, but Ned was onstage playing with the Dead for their whole show sometimes, but you can never hear him? Either the SBD didn't have him plugged in or they had him buried in the mix. Here he kind of fades in and fades out. I know in the Grateful Dead Movie he is playing with them onstage on Dark Star and Sugar Magnolia but you can't hear him at all! Imagine what great music we might be missing out on! I would love to hear his contributions! I have seen various pictures of him playing with the band but when I listen to the respective recordings, he is nowhere to be found. Wonder why?
Reviewer: SMR-list - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 18, 2008
Subject: Good
Nice to read it, Dead? why Dead
Reviewer: skullsnroses - favoritefavoritefavorite - September 18, 2008
Subject: comfortably numb tongue
Sorry, but there is no way that we don't listen to the dead for the lyrics or singing! As a musician I appreciate that music is what you make, not how you judge it. How many tapes have to be cast off as wrong? when the captain takes the wheel the ship sails...the destination is in your heart. Look carefully at how you choose to hold those that you count as your human family close to your heart. There can never be anything like a dead show, but the family will survive! We have all lost somebody on the road of life and many were true lovers of the world and the heady trip. All is not lost on the cold winds though. Pick the flowers, dance in the grass and may you always be going safely home.

I think the China White comment is right too... there is no feeling in this whole show. Jerry and Donna both sound like they are amazed by the sound of their voices and its more interesting to them then heartfelt. The cosmic drama in this life and the next is not one, nor lost through only one door.This is Rock and Roll, black and blue at times. Bob is the only singing bird on this night. Hey maybe its the tape after all. Black throated wind is good. Hits the clear immediate and tangible and nameable truth on the head. Tatto my skull!

The jamming is pretty trippy and fun, and Keith is doing some cool stuff... listen if you can stomach the numb feeling that pervades the whole show. Booooo Drugs. Do take a moment to listen to China Cat actually.. the end few minutes is amazing. frustrated YES, discouraged NO.
Reviewer: Winsome_Holstein_Nebuula - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 18, 2008
Subject: Roll Away This Cruel Reality, Thanks. I'll Eat It Here.
They were called the Grateful Dead because they weren't called Crosby, Still, & Nash.
Much as I loved the songs, hearing the voices that became as familiar in my ears as family, I soon learned that The Lads, ( and later, the Lassie too ), how ever gifted they were at finding Factor X at just the right moment to transport a coliseum of happy souls over the moon, they'd never get there on the strength of their singing.

And, like family too, I loved them just as well.

Few things in my life were as spiritually sorrowful as hearing the news one day that Jerry had been busted for smoking skag in his BMW in Golden Gate Park. The blush was then truly off the rose and the grinning skull beneath laid bare.

The blessing amidst the pain of the fragile chaos we traveled through is the legacy of human warmth and magic that is rekindled anew through the grace of these shows, and our ability to share a fully human experience, sweet and sour, and still love the moment, each other, and be grateful.

Loving the Dead in the full frontal scope of reality and all the myriad human facets, warts n all, is not an easy thing, but is so worth it.

No family is perfect and for many years, for a lot so souls out on the fringe of hope, the Dead provided a conduit, safe passage, to an idea of community and family that was tempered over time by the sometimes harsh literal facts behind the myths.

Joseph Campbell has said that a culture's willingness to hold true to it's myths is just as important as it's ability to grow and accept truth.

The truth is that the lads never sang all that well, that Donna Jean ruined many of my tapes, that Bobby really was the Jester of the Troupe, that Phil really did end up carrying the spear forward, and that in spite of themselves, they proved over and over again the truth of Uncle Bo Bo's adage:

There Is NOTHING Like A Grateful Dead Concert.
Reviewer: Dr.G - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - November 13, 2007
Subject: China White --> unusual synergy?
Based on Rock Scully's report of this visit to Europe, it seems these two shows at Palais Des Sports happened right as they got introduced to China White heroin. Might explain the unique sound/synergy...
Reviewer: darazn1 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 4, 2007
Subject: Unusual Synergy
Listening to the China Cat right now. The band is revealing a very strange, 3-dimensional synergy that is difficult to explain. Don't need to be stoned to hear it; but listen with that "detached ear" of the prior review. The sublime magic of the Grateful Dead; just when you think the music is sputtering along like a dirty old bus coughing smoke out the exhaust pipes, along comes this space ship that takes you away. What is it?
Reviewer: esreveRDelay - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - March 9, 2007
Subject: Nice and slow.
This pace and technique of seperation is beautiful.
Reviewer: Dub Irie - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 7, 2006
Subject: Sounds Great
I guess there must be a sad loss of quality when these get streamed because my SBD version of this sounds great. I don't have the same problems as other listeners here with the mix or anything except a barely audible hum in the source. It is a classic show well worth a listen.
Reviewer: The Dragonfly - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 16, 2005
Subject: Decent concert, clausterphobic sound
Due to the constraints of the soundboard source of this recording, the drums and Jerry are prominent in the mix. Added to the primitive noise reduction, this results in a great concert marred by abrasive uneven instrument and vocal levels. However, if you listen with a "distanced" ear, you can appreciate the magic that is happening on stage. Scarlet rocks on the verses and jams out on the coda pleasantly. Truckin and Eyes both reach plateaus of synergistic groove-blissness. Maybe not the best (check out 9-18-74 for that...), but certainly a superior and notably jam-happy concert with many inspiring moments. Well worth checking out. The four stars is for the performance. The uneven sound gets a "three".

Also note - "Brown Eyed Women" is listed in the Dead Base IV book and in the set list here, but is NOT listed in the 3-volume Deadheads Taping Compendium and IS NOT in the SHN source here. This leaves open the possibility of some obscure audience tape with the song. Anyone care to share?

Reviewer: phishisgood - favoritefavoritefavorite - March 2, 2005
Subject: ?
B.E. Women?? where are you??
Reviewer: ImFromComptonBoieee - favoritefavoritefavorite - February 17, 2005
Subject: Europe74'
very unique show. Jerry plays around a lot and experiments a bit more than usual, probably due to the rest of the band not being completely focused. it sounds as if William and Phil are both totally lost this nite, and you cant hear bobby on this recording so i cant say how he was, not as if thats a bad thing. Garcia is crystal clear in this recording and at times it honestly sounds as if its just Garcia, Keith and William on stage. Very folksy and very mellow show. Very interesting Scarlet and FOTD. The Let it Grow gets pretty nasty, but with Phil not really adding much it isnt nearly as good as the earlier Grows from the year. anyhow, very different style of show, almost similar to a JGB show from this era. it definately doesnt dissapoint, its just has some character. which is a good thing.
Reviewer: posterdanknutbag - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - November 2, 2004
Subject: Headie Show
This show is hot. Check it out. With the option of choosing whichever show you want on this website, why not listen to this one. The sound quality is good, so its a good one for your car cd player. Peace
info Stream Only
Stream playlist
( VBR )
In Collection
Grateful Dead
In Collection
Live Music Archive
Uploaded by
Jonathan Aizen
on 4/14/2004
SIMILAR ITEMS (based on metadata)
Grateful Dead
by Grateful Dead
eye 37,451
favorite 53
comment 38
favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 38 reviews )
Source: Soundboard
Grateful Dead
by Grateful Dead
eye 28,970
favorite 27
comment 21
favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 21 reviews )
Source: Soundboard
Grateful Dead
by Grateful Dead
eye 152,430
favorite 164
comment 70
favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 70 reviews )
Source: Soundboard
Grateful Dead
by Grateful Dead
eye 8,571
favorite 6
comment 12
favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 12 reviews )
Source: Soundboard
Grateful Dead
by Grateful Dead
eye 85,318
favorite 103
comment 61
favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 61 reviews )
Source: Soundboard
Grateful Dead
by Grateful Dead
eye 6,954
favorite 20
comment 13
favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 13 reviews )
Source: Soundboard
Grateful Dead
by Grateful Dead
eye 55,887
favorite 65
comment 52
favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 52 reviews )
Source: Soundboard
Grateful Dead
by Grateful Dead
eye 28,879
favorite 28
comment 27
favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 27 reviews )
Source: Soundboard
Grateful Dead
by Grateful Dead
eye 24,126
favorite 34
comment 11
favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 11 reviews )
Source: Soundboard
Grateful Dead
by Grateful Dead
eye 65,527
favorite 70
comment 58
favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 58 reviews )
Source: Soundboard